The Best Bread Baskets

Photo by Jon Estrada

Photo by Jon Estrada

We had a tough time coming up with the grand champion in this most essential of dining categories. So we dispatched dining writer Grace Bascos to weigh the best of the best.

Joël Robuchon Though the breads are seasonal, the guest expressions of awe never change at the sight of more than a dozen breads on the cart, pulled from the oven only minutes before service begins. It’s difficult to narrow the choices, but nobody ever passes up the decadent bacon-and-mustard baguette. In MGM Grand, 891-7925.

Restaurant Guy Savoy Can’t decide between the seaweed baguette or the olive ciabatta? Not sure if you need a baguette with or without poppy seeds? Your bread sommelier (because that really is a thing) is happy to pair breads to go with each of your courses. In Caesars Palace, 731-7286.

Brand Steakhouse Only available upon request, the warm rolls arrive in a cast-iron skillet, shiny and buttery. Milk, cream and a little bit of sugar make them just soft enough to hit the sweet spot in your brain that turns off all your self control to stop eating them. In the Monte Carlo, 693-8300.

And the champion is …

Spago With Kamel Guechida now in charge of the baked goods at Wolfgang Puck’s flagship restaurant, its bread game has been upped considerably. The basket that arrives at the table (pictured above) has a selection of simple yet well-crafted breads made in the traditional style with dough-fermentation processes that range from 24 to 36 hours, to allow each bread’s distinct flavors and textures to develop. The big, round, slightly acidic boule of pain de campagne–considered the French sourdough–gets sliced to order for guests, along with baguettes, cherry walnut and ciabatta. The individual baguettes, with their perfectly crunchy crust and soft centers, are best eaten while still warm, and slathered with salted room-temperature butter. In the Forum Shops at Caesars, 369-6300.

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